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Thoughts and Experiences from the Mile High City of Denver, Colorado

Judge Blocks Gift Ban Provision of Amendment 41

Peter

A Denver District Judge has banned the gift-ban provision of Amendment 41. This was a constitution vote by voters last fall that banned gifts over $50 and banned all gifts by lobbyists. Gifts are now allowed to be given to elected officials and their families until there is a trial and verdict.

This had drawn some controversy because it was interpreted to include the ban of giving scholarships to sons and daughters of elected officials. I think that is ridiculous.

This was a stupidly written law in the first place and should be overturned. There are better ways to handle this type of law, number one of those is to not make it a constitutional amendment to the state constitution.

As reported in an article in the Denver Post, Judge Christina Habas wrote in her ruling,

"There is little doubt that the reach of Amendment 41 went well beyond what was anticipated or intended, based upon what even the Government concedes to be the ambiguous language of the Amendment. For these reasons, I find that Plaintiffs have met their substantial burden justifying injunctive relief, and therefore issue a Preliminary Injunction enjoining the enforcement of the gift bans contained in sections 2 and 3 of Amendment 41."

You can read the story in the Denver Post, "Judge blocks Amendment 41" or the Rocky Mountain News, "Judge puts gift-ban provision on hold". Colorado Index also has a post on this issue, "Parts of Polis Amendment Put on Hold". My previous posts on Amendment 41: